With AICC in-charge of Bihar Shaktisinh Gohil down with Covid, the Congress has rushed Randeep Surjewala back to Patna for the coordination on counting day and after. Surjewala returned from Patna last week after spending over a month there. He is one of the Congress leaders who has direct access to Rahul Gandhi. Senior party leader Avinash Pande, it is heard, has also been asked to rush to Patna on Monday. With most exit polls predicting an edge for the Opposition alliance, the Congress camp is upbeat.
On Sunday, as Lal Krishna Advani turned 93, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP president J P Nadda visited his residence together to greet him. They spent some time with him and Modi cut a chocolate cake and fed the party veteran. An emotional Advani gave a piece to the Prime Minister and others. “It is always a delight to spend time with him. For karyakartas like me, Advani Ji’s support and guidance remain invaluable. His contributions to nation building are immense,” Modi tweeted.
With several exit polls predicting a setback for NDA in Bihar, there seem to be murmurs in the BJP. Party leaders are calling each other to blame ticket distribution, the caste combination plan and the initial strategy to keep distance from Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. While one section is of the view that fighting alone would have helped the party, others say confusion within the alliance has been damaging. A defeat would be bad news for party chief J P Nadda, who is to lead the BJP into elections in West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala next year. Party insiders said there could be calls for introspection if the exit poll predictions come true.
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